After the Nisqually quake, the Lancaster New Era, in Pennsylvania, caught up with three natives who’d since moved to Seattle and got their earthquake stories. Bill Stainton, a tv producer, said:
“I went and stood under a doorway. It’s kind of like pulling the covers up over your head. Then the monsters can’t get you. I hear some people were up in the Space Needle. That had to be hairy.”
“It’s a little wake-up call to remind you that there is a higher power out there controlling things. At first it felt like there was a huge truck outside, or construction. But that was just a preamble. Once things got rocking, it was like you were on a canoe and someone was rocking the boat. Or you felt like a marionette and someone dropped the strings.”
Bob McCaffrey said: “It was real scary. It really happened fast and furiously. We dove under our desks and there was a lot of screaming. Some dust and debris fell from the ceiling and the light fixtures were swinging like mad.
“There was a feeling of helplessness afterward. Phone lines were jammed, everyone was trying to reach their loved ones.”
And the San Francisco Chronicle reported:
When the quake hit, John Lentz was diving for geoducks, the largest clams in North America. He was standing on the floor of the Puget Sound, 20 feet under water, when he heard “a rumbling noise like large boulders going down a slope.”
At first, Lentz thought it was his 36-foot fishing boat exploding. “It took me 10 seconds before I figured out that it was an earthquake.”
Because his crew members were on the boat, they didn’t feel the quake. But when they heard the noise from the microphone attached to Lentz’s mask, they panicked.
Finally, he surfaced and told them he thought it was a quake.